The Barn

March 11, 2014

The Barn external viewThis single storey domestic property to the west of Heptonstall was extended and adapted during 2013 to provide wheelchair-accessible living accommodation.

The existing house was modest in size with a split-level lounge, narrow hallway, steps at the external doorways and a steeply sloping garden. All of these features presented significant obstacles to Judy, my client, who is a wheelchair user, but the unique location and magnificent setting offered her a great opportunity for a new home and improved quality of life. With some creative planning, these were all obstacles to be overcome!

An extension increased the size of the size of the living room and, significantly, provided a large (2m high x 3.6m wide) window that provides a tremendous view of the countryside and vital daylight to the building interior. A fold-down platform stairlift was installed to link the split-level living area.

The Barn window

Accessibility within the hallway was improved by reversing the swing of the external door and by removing a section of partition and a doorway dividing the hallway from the kitchen – both of these simple changes created more internal manoeuvring space whilst also improving access into the bedrooms.

Assistive-technologies, including electrically operated window-opening devices and roller blinds, and solar-powered remote-control rooflight operators, all enable Judy to easily control daylight and ventilation to the bedroom and living areas. Powered door-opening devices to the external doors enable easy access into and out of the property onto the gently graded paths to the garden and forecourt.

The Barn window openerThe Barn platform lift

The new accessible kitchen from Scanflex includes a height-adjustable work surface with an inset sink and hob. The work surface can be easily adjusted to suit use either in a seated or standing position and has a clear space below the counter so that Judy can sit comfortably in her wheelchair to prepare meals, cook and use the sink. The bathroom includes a level access shower and half-height moveable shower screens in a wetroom arrangement.

Russell Waring Building Contractors Ltd undertook the extension and adaptation works which were completed to a very high standard.

Judy is delighted with her new home, which is now fully accessible and equipped to meet her needs.

The Barn kitchen

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